Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Tuesday This And That

Here's another “smiler” I got from Chuck Buell yesterday …

Yep! It's Another Monday!

And it sure can seem like this sometimes!





Actually, I'm just wishing that you have a Spectacular Week!

Chuck!


Ain’t it the truth!  May we ALL have a better week!  (kk)

 

More from Tommy Roe …

 

I think what happened is that after the Sullivan show, the agents in New York could see an opportunity to get close to the next super stars and brought their acts in to be a part of the excitement, and maybe get on the show. Murray the K was there asking me if I could get him into their suite for an interview. It was chaos.

None of us realized the logistics would be so difficult because of the weather. Also, I think Brian Epstein and The Beatles were surprised at the huge reception they received from the American fans. They were not prepared for what was about to happen to them. They didn’t know it at the time, but they didn’t need opening acts, it was just how things were done back then. After that show, there were never any opening acts.

In my book, From Cabbagetown to Tinseltown, I go into a lot of what happened with my conversations with Brian Epstein when I did the British tour in 1963 with The Beatles. He had a plan and it worked.

Tommy

Actually, for all of their American shows, The Beatles always had opening acts … not big names, necessarily, but during this era, their entire performance only lasted 30-35 minutes … not like the full-blown concerts of today.  They were pretty much on and off stage in a flash, performing their set with very little variation or kibitzing between songs.

Over the years, The Ronettes, Cannibal and the Headhunters, Bobby Hebb, Bill Black’s Combo, The Cyrkle, The Exciters … to lesser-known acts at the time like Brenda Holloway, King Curtis, The Remains to Sounds, Incorporated (who did the majority of The Beatles’ shows here in The States.)

 

From a report covering The Beatles’ First US Show …




Three groups were advertised to perform as opening acts that night – including the girl group, The Chiffons, and also Tommy Roe and The Caravelles. However, an East Coast snow storm prevented The Chiffons from getting to Washington.

Although the existing historical record is unclear about which groups actually performed that night as opening and/or intermission acts, Tommy Roe reports that he was there, and performed three songs – “Sheila,” “Everybody,” and “Carol.” Also reportedly appearing that night were Jay & The Americans, The Righteous Brothers, and The Caravelles. The opening acts were quite good, according to some in attendance that evening.

With no documentation, photographs or video content, I think we just have to go with “majority rules” on this one.

Ironically, The Beatles’ performance was filmed by CBS and then released in theaters as a Closed Circuit, Pay-Per-View showing … but for theater, they were paired with concerts by The Beach Boys and Lesley Gore, both of whom had absolutely NOTHING to do with the Washington, DC show!  (kk)




It is ESPECIALLY cool to see a ticket from our very own Lake Theatre, right here in Oak Park!  (kk)

 

Meanwhile, here's a fun Q&A luncheon with Jay Black from that same B103 interview, just before his 70th birthday …  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTFP_BfG6pg

 

With all the shows I’ve seen over the course of a lifetime, Jay Black is one that I regret never having seen live … watching some live clips this weekend, it looks like I missed a VERY entertaining night of music and laughter.  Again, even well into his 70’s, Jay never failed to entertain those who came to see him.  He LOVED to perform.  (kk)

 

Here’s Jay performing with his son in 2011 … Jay black with his son - YouTube

 

And how about this ...

FH Reader Tom Cuddy and Jay Black, circa 1985 ...



What’s wrong with people?

What would possess somebody to deliberately go out and deface the Buddy Holly statue in Lubbock, TX?  But that’s exactly what somebody did …

Iconic Buddy Holly Statue vandalized - YouTube

 

As to the new song by ABBA, I’m just not a big fan anymore. 

This sounds like Waterloo backing (slowed down) and Andrews Sisters-type delivery vocally.  Just my take on it.

Clark

I like it.  New ABBA sounds just like OLD ABBA because this track is, essentially, old ABBA!  I’m curious to hear the rest of the album … but I like what I’ve heard so far.  (kk)

 

Meanwhile, The Dave Clark Five’s US debut album, “Glad All Over,” is being reissued on white vinyl in a remastered version that was overseen by Dave Clark himself.

Three of the songs from this LP ended up making The National Pop Charts here in 1964 … “Glad All Over” (#5), “Bits And Pieces” (#3) and “Do You Love Me” (#8).  November 26th has been set as the release date.  (kk)

 

From brand new FH Reader Nick Frankart …

 

Please send me your "fascinating newsletter" as referenced on Dwight Rounds' website AnimalstoZombies.com.

Thank you, Kent!

I look forward to becoming a regular reader, and at least an occasional contributor. 

I currently live in Long Beach, CA, although I grew up in the Steel City - Pittsburgh, PA, just a stone’s throw up the hill (there are hills everywhere in the Pittsburgh area) from the home of the Vogues, who hailed from the small town/suburb of Turtle Creek (great name, huh?), PA. 

Speaking of stones, I just saw The Rolling Stones in concert for the very first time ever - in LA last week. They were sensational, and still bring it!

More later. 

Best regards, and glad to make your acquaintance!

Nick

Welcome aboard, Nick … you’ve got a WHOLE lotta catching up to do!  (lol) 

And, if you’d like to prepare a complete Rolling Stones concert review, I’d be happy to run it!  (kk)

 

Frank B sent us this Facebook Post from Mark Lindsay, correcting the misinformation circulating about next year’s Happy Together Tour …



A big head’s up, kids - I suppose it’s to be expected after Covid caused Happy Together shows to be re-scheduled, re-re-scheduled, and even re-re-re-scheduled, but we’ve just become aware of several venues advertising a lineup for 2022 including ME. That is INCORRECT info and I’ll be sending off an email to my agent shortly so that it’s fixed. I have no idea who’ll be on the 2022 tour, but it definitely will NOT be me.

ML

 

Lindsay announced last year that he was foregoing touring for the near future, trying to get his mind and body into a healthier state.  (Mark had heart issues a couple of years ago as well.)

I’m not sure why any theater would be posting erroneous information when the CORRECT information exists … but we’re passing the info along as a Buyer Beware service.  Mark Lindsay will NOT be part of the 2022 Happy Together Tour.  (kk)

 

Chuck Buell waxes on about his dislike of The Fifth Dimension’s #1 Hit “Aquarius / Let The Sunshine In” from 1969 …

 

>>>To me, "Aquarius" is just too much of a saccharin overdose of cosmic hippieness!

CB (which stands for "Curmudgeon Boy!")

>>>Well, on this one, I think you’ll find that you’re probably in the minority.  Not only did it top the charts for five weeks back in 1969, but it’s still very popular with oldies radio and oldies fans in general.  (kk) 

 

HA!  Yep! 

So, I did a little guesstimation on how many times (minimum) I must have played that song on the “CB Radio Shows” from its initial status as a “Pick Hit of the Week,” its Rise UP the Chart, Domination of its Five Weeks of Number One Position, and its Descend Back down. I calculated roughly somewhere around 115-120+ times in a short, concentrated 11 to 12 week period alone!

We all have songs that are not our favorites and when one has to play a lesser-liked one multiple times a day, for weeks on end, for on-going months, it can become like “too much ice cream!”  Brain Freeze!!

(I didn’t include the gazillions of times I must have played it afterwards over the years as it solidified its rightful place in Contemporary Music History as a “Recurrent,” “Golden Oldie,” “Memory Maker” or became Enshrined Forever as a Major Hit in the “Forgotten Hits Archives!”) 

~CB~

I’ve often wondered about how torturous it must have been having to play “the hits” a couple of times in a four hour shift when you didn’t especially LIKE one of those hits.  (I guess I just figured that these instances became much-anticipated bathroom breaks!)

And, of course, some of these songs became instant button-pushers for us out driving around listening to our favorite Top 40 Hits stations. Making me think, “Yeah, these songs may have been earning points for airplay … but how many people out there were actually LISTENING to them?!?!?”  (kk)

 

A brand new 13-CD box set commemorating the Music of The Viet Nam War is in the works … it features 17 hours of music and time-sensitive news reports … you can check out the track list here …

 

Various - History Box set: Next Stop Is Vietnam 1961-2008 (13-CD Deluxe Box Set) - Bear Family Records (bear-family.com)

 

File this under “Totally Unnecessary Remakes” …

It’s Ringo Starr’s new version of “Rock Around The Clock,” sent in by FH Reader Frank B.



Meanwhile, congratulate The Beatles on another hit album …

The “Let It Be” reissue box placed at #5 on Billboard’s brand new Top 200 Albums Chart … and actually was the top selling album of the week.  (Roughly translated, between sales, streams and downloads, the combined variations of the reissue set sold about 55,000 copies … 48,000 of which were physical, actual CDs … ‘cause that’s the way we old timers roll, ya dig???)

I made it thru the complete box over the weekend and have to report that overall, I am somewhat disappointed by the content.  There was just SO much more out there available that has never been commercially released that would have been FAR more interesting to hear.  (Do we really need four or five versions of “Don’t Let Me Down,” “Get Back,” “Let It Be,” “Two Of Us” and “I’ve Got A Feeling”???  Heck even the throw-away track “Maggie May” makes three appearances on the box set!)  This is especially disheartening when one considers that the original FAST version of “Two Of Us” isn’t even included at all.  (I especially like the bit in the original “Let It Be” film when Paul goes into his Elvis impersonation during the run-through of this song … but you won’t find it here!)

Nor will you find any of the lengthy jams the group did to warm up for each session, revisiting songs from their earlier incarnation playing the Hamburg clubs … LOTS of ‘50’s and early ‘60’s tunes that they would use to loosen up for a session.

For years, The Beatles insisted that what was in the vault would STAY in the vault.  From what I’ve seen thus far (meaning everything released AFTER the well-picked gems from the “Anthology” series) probably should have stayed there.  I see nothing new and exciting here … and even less so since the “Let It Be Naked” album release has already shown us the stripped-down, original intent of the band.  (kk)

 

Frank B also sent us this one …



This was found online by Scotty's nephew Lee. It’s likely a recent addition to the registry of landmarks. Photo credit unknown.

 

An interesting Billy Joel concert review from the show he did in Austin, Texas, this past weekend …

Billy Joel Plays Human Jukebox During Lively Austin Show: Review (ultimateclassicrock.com)

 

And another Chuck Buell Production …

 

We interrupt today’s regularly scheduled Forgotten Hits Post to bring you this FHTV International Special from Forgotten Hits Television Network President and General Manager of Programming, Chuck Buell.

(In the interest of full disclosure, he produced only the overall Program Presentation Concept … meaning just its Intro and Close.  kk)



Monday, October 25, 2021

Much More Jay

Such sad news about Jay Black … he had been in failing health for some time now.  His whole life was tied to his voice and (much like some of the conversations we’ve had here recently) when he came to the conclusion that he could no longer hit those notes, he called it a career. Sadly for him, that moment of realization came while he was onstage performing.  Still, to be able to maintain the breathing techniques and vocal power well into his 70’s is no small feat … nor is being able to hit and hold those incredible notes.  He will be missed.  (kk)

Jay Black has died at age 82 … fabulous voice and a very funny man.

I was at his last show four years ago at Mohegan Sun … it was a Bowzer show.

Jay should never have done it.  He hadn’t performed in a year and his failing health impacted his voice for the first time.  He apologized to the crowd for not being able to hit some of the high notes.

Tom Cuddy


Certainly NOT the way he would have liked to have gone out, which lead me back to my point over the past few weeks as to what kind of lasting memory do you want to leave your fans with.  Show Business is and has always been a fickle business … you’re only as good as your last hit … and in Jay’s case, that was a long, long time ago.  (I still have to laugh every time I think about Nick Fortuna of The Buckinghams announcing on stage, “We’d like to do our most recent Top 20 Hit” … and then performing “Susan” from 1968!!!  Lol)

Jay Black has every right to be proud of his performance legacy.  His personal life have have been a train wreck (and it sounds like it was, based on many of the things I’ve heard and read over the years), but man, the guy could sing … like nobody else.  (kk)

 

Some more info on Jay Black …

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/jay-black-singer-jay-americans-235611578.html


I'm quite sure that some of this is flat out wrong - 

Jay and the Americans didn't form in the 1950's with Jay Black ...

Jay Black replaced Jay Traynor AFTER the group had their first hit in 1962 with "She Cried" ...

And I have absolutely NO knowledge of Jay and the Americans ever opening for The Beatles ...

And certainly not at their first concert in America ...

That distinction belongs to The Caravelles and Tommy Roe.

I’m not so sure I'd trust running the link to this one.  (kk)

I agree with you. You would think Spin Magazine would be a more credible source. 

TC


And then …

Here’s the Hollywood Reporter ...

It appears his family put out a release, including the Beatles mention

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/music-news/jay-black-lead-singer-jay-the-americans-dies-at-82-1235035946/

Rolling Stone also states that Jay opened for the Beatles in DC.

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/jay-black-jay-and-the-americans-singer-dead-obit-1247111/

I guess I’ve been wrong for all these years!  (At least The Hollywood Reporter and Rolling Stone got the part right about Jay Traynor!!!)  lol

Kent: This story says Jay and the Americans were with Tommy Roe as opening acts.

https://www.beatlesbible.com/1964/02/11/live-washington-coliseum/

I probably trust The Beatles Bible more than any other source … especially since they had this information documented BEFORE Jay Black passed away.  (Ironically, THIS account doesn’t mention The Caravelles as being part of the show … but I’ve read interviews with these girls before talking about the show.  They were hot at the time with “You Don’t Have To Be A Baby To Cry.”)  kk

And then, of course, there’s this 2008 interview with Jay Black sent in by FH Reader Frank B … talking about his upcoming show on November 1st in Westbury, where he’d be performing on what would be his then 70th birthday …


 

kk …

Jay jokes about death ... and even Jay has a Beatles story to tell.

FB

 

Lots of talk about Jay and the Americans opening for The Beatles at their first US show in Washington, DC back in February of 1964 … something I wasn’t aware of.  (I only knew of The Caravelles and Tommy Roe opening for The Beatles.  For some reason, I recall that either The Crystals or The Chiffons were supposed to be there, too … but they had to cancel for some reason … a snow storm perhaps (???)


But even in Jay’s interview, he talks about being there opening for The Beatles, along with The Righteous Brothers (who I also wasn’t aware of being there!)  I have had a video tape of this concert for decades now and don’t recall EVER hearing anything about anyone other than Tommy Roe and The Caravelles being there that day.  (The Beatles, of course, were on the Tommy Roe / Chris Montez show in England the year before … so I also heard that they hand-picked Tommy to open for their first show here in the US.)  Tommy has told us the story about how he wrote his big hit “Everybody” on John Lennon’s guitar when he hung out behind in the truck while the others ran in to get something to eat.


I asked him about the bill that incredible night of February 11, 1964 …

And was quite surprised to see that, due to the circumstances surrounding this event, even a guy who was THERE that night isn't exactly sure as to what transpired ...


Hi Kent ... 

First, I send my condolences to the family and friends of Jay Black. Big voice, very talented. RIP.

As to who performed that night, Kent, this has been a controversy for years, and the only thing I can add is what I vaguely remember about this extraordinary and chaotic event. 
The billing was, The Beatles, The Chiffons, and me. It was very cold inside the arena, and outside it was extremely cold with a heavy snow fall. The Chiffons didn’t make the show because of the weather so the promoter had me open the show, I guess, hoping The Chiffons might arrive before I was finished. Everything was delayed because of weather and the extremely uncomfortable conditions inside the coliseum.
Boxing matches were held in the arena, so our stage was a boxing ring without the ropes ... small stage indeed.  Compared to today, the whole set up was very primitive. All of The Beatles' equipment was already set on the stage, and there was no room for another band. The Beatles' crew would not allow my band to set up their equipment on stage, or perform with me on stage. We did manage to set up a couple of amps, but it was very disorganized. I brought the musicians from Fame Studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, with me, and how we managed to drive there in the snow and arrive on time will always be a miracle in my mind. 
Anyway, my band had to set up on the floor at the side of the stage ... you can see them in the photo ... and I performed on stage by myself, which was something I had never done before, but we managed to do our set. When I finished, they were still waiting for The Chiffons, and to this day, I’m not sure if they ever arrived. I do not remember any performances after my set, but like I said, it was chaotic and I might have missed something.
I will say this ... the only photographs I have seen of another performer on stage that night besides the Beatles, is me. 
When I did the 50th anniversary concert on February 11, 2014, celebrating The Beatles' First American concert, I met Mike Mitchell, and he gave me the two attached photos of me opening the the show. Mike was the photographer who took all those amazing photos of the Fab Four on that night.
After the concert back at the hotel, I remember seeing Jay, and Bobby Hatfield of The Righteous Brothers, in the lobby, but I do not remember them actually performing at the concert. I would think if there were others who performed that evening, there would most likely be some photos. It would help to answer this on-going question of who opened for The Beatles on their 1st American concert on February 11, 1964. We would all like to know the true history of this historical Beatles concert.
It is certainly an amazing part of Rock ’n’ Roll history.

T.


A Poster of February 11, 1964, The Beatles' First American concert, is hanging on my Wall of Fame.
T.


Amazing!  Thanks, Tommy!  (Well, if nothing else, this shows us who was SUPPOSED to be there.  How or why they would have booked additional acts ... or even had the time to do so in the midst of this massive winter storm ... is beyond me ... so it is now our mission in life to find out exactly what really happened that night!!!)  kk

Be sure to check out our interview with Tommy Roe from a few years ago ...

Forgotten Hits - Forgotten Hits Interviews Tommy Roe


Jay and the Americans posted this notice on their website regarding Jay Black’s passing …

 

“Today, we mourn the passing of David Blatt a/k/a Jay Black, and we acknowledge the great successes we had with him both as a partner and as a lead singer. We shared both wonderful and very contentious times and, much like an ex-wife, we are so proud of the beautiful children we created. We’ll always remember The Voice.”

 

COUSIN BRUCIE x 2:

kk …

Kenny Vance Talked To Cousin Brucie About Jay Black.

Kenny Said That Jay Heard David Whitfield Sing "CARA MIA" On The Ed Sullivan Show. Right Away Jay Said That He Wanted To Record It. Everybody Thought He Was Crazy. Early On, They Were Produced By Lieber & Stoller.  They Dropped The Group, Thinking There Was Nothing There.

Of Course, Today Kenny Vance And The Planotones Are Very Popular.

Kenny Was An original Member Of The Harbor Lights -- Who Became Jay And The Americans.

The Group Recorded "ONLY IN AMERICA” When The Drifters Passed On It.

Cousin Brucie Also Talked To Robert Jaramillo, Original Member Of Cannibal And The Headhunters.

In 1964, They Toured With The Beatles. Robert Said That Everybody Forgets They Also Opened For The Rolling Stones On May 7, 1965.

Kent - You Should Ask Me, “Frank, What About That Name?”

Okay , I'll Tell You.

Their Lead Singer, The Late Frankie Garcia, Got In A Fight When He was 15 Years Old And Bit The Other Guy’s Ear Off … Thus, Cannibal And The Headhunters.

Their Big Hit Was The Chris Kenner Song "LAND OF 1000 DANCES." Robert Told Us That Originally They Sang It Without The "NA NA NA NA."  One Night While Singing The Song, The Mic Broke. Next Night They Were Getting Requests For That "NA NA NA NA” Song.  They Didn't Know What The Audience Was Talking About.

Pretty Interesting For A One Hit Wonder Group ... And They're Still Around, Recently Doing Shows At The Greek Theatre On The West Coast And An Upstate New York Casino On The East Coast.  They're Currently Booking Shows For Next Year.

Frank B.

 

Looking For An Echo - Kenny Vance – YouTube

kk …

What Every Street Corner Group Was Looking For

FB



Cannibal & The Headhunters - Land Of 1000 Dances – YouTube

kk:

I Haven't Thought About This Song In A Long Time.

I Think They Were On The Lost Murray The K Special.

FB



Cannibal and the Headhunters bested Chris Kenner’s version of “Land of 1000 Dances,” taking it to #30 compared to Chris’ #77 showing.

However, the REAL hit version of this song belonged to Wilson Pickett, whose hit record went all the way to #6.  Thee Midniters, Electric Indian and The J. Geils Band also scored Hot 100 Hits with this tune ... not bad for a “Na Na” song that predated both “Hey Jude” and Steam’s “Na Na, Hey Hey, Kiss Him Goodbye.”  (Amazing what you can do with a nonsense lyric!  Songwriters often fill in their missing lyrics with “na-na’s” as space holders until they can come up with the proper words to fit the tune.  In these cases, the “na-na’s” became an integral part of the song!)  kk

 

Here’s another interesting clip on Cannibal and the Headhunters’ career …



Jay Black, what a great voice, and the reason I am currently in a band.

When he left Jay & The Americans, his place was taken by John Reincke, who at that time was "Johnny Starr" in Johnny Starr and the Meteors.  I saw John's last show with the Meteors.  I told him he sounded very much like Jay (Black) and he responded, "I am Jay!".  When he sang "She Cried" he introduced it as his first #1 song, even though he was eight years old when that happened.

The Meteors approached a singer I had worked for in the 80's, Harry Stevens, to replace John.  Instead, Harry decided the time was right for "putting the band back together" and recruited me as a drummer.  Starting a 60's band in the 2000's is an uphill battle, but it's been fun.

The Meteors seem to be working steadily.  I've seen them a couple of times.  They put on a good show.

Anyway, that's my four degrees of separation from Jay Black.

Ed #1

Johnny Starr and the Meteors were a top oldies attraction here for years and years.  John Reincke has an incredible voice and vocal range and also paid tribute to other popular singers as part of his act, including Roy Orbison and Neil Diamond.  (Turns out, Jay Black ALSO was a huge fan of The Big O, and would start their shows with either “Oh, Pretty Woman” or “Crying,” a song that Jay and the Americans also went on to record.

I’ve seen the group with Jay #3 a number of times now and they absolutely DO honor the legacy of the original band (just like the judge ordered them to!  Lol)  kk


Sadly, Jay's death wasn't the only one we need to report from last week ...


We also lost these movers and shakers who affected our lives in one way or another ...


Robin McNamara ... who had himself a huge hit in 1970 with "Lay a Little Lovin' On Me" ... passed away yesterday (Thursday), at the age of 74.

In 1963, while in tenth grade, McNamara formed a rock and roll group with a few school friends; they christened their band Robin and the Hoods, performing locally in the New England area with McNamara as the lead vocalist.

In the late 1960s, McNamara relocated to New York City, where he became a cast member of the Broadway musical Hair, playing the lead role of Claude from 1969-71. In 1969, he was introduced to composer/record producer Jeff Barry, who signed him to his Steed record label.

Together with McNamara’s then songwriting partner Jim Cretecos, they wrote a song called “Lay a Little Lovin’ on Me,” which McNamara took to number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the summer of 1970. A lack of further chart success resulted in McNamara being dubbed a one-hit wonder.

Ken Voss


 

Sad to lose actor Peter Scolari on Friday … I always enjoyed his work on both “Bosom Buddies” and “Newhart.”  He was one of those actors that you wouldn’t see for awhile and then all of a sudden, he’d just show up on something … even just a small part … to remind you of how well thought of he was.  He will be missed.  (kk)

 

Songwriter LESLIE BRICUSSE has died at the age of 90.
He wrote many musicals … and co-wrote two James Bond Themes … "GOLDFINGER (My Favorite) and "YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE."

Frank B.

I like both of those as well.

In fact, the other night when there was nothing on, I ran a YouTube mix of EVERY James Bond opening sequence and movie theme.  (Trust me, this’ll take a while to watch!!!)

Having probably only seen four or five Bond films in my whole life (I’ve just never really been a big fan), it was interesting to discover the cool themes recorded by Gladys Knight (“License To Kill”) and Sheryl Crow (“Tomorrow Never Dies.”)

If I had to rank my Top 007 James Bond Themes, I think I’d have to go with:

 

#7 – Tomorrow Never Dies – Sheryl Crow

#6 – License To Kill – Gladys Knight

#5 – Nobody Does It Better – Carly Simon

#4 – Skyfall - Adele

#3 – The James Bond Theme – The John Barry Orchestra

#2 – Goldfinger – Shirley Bassey

#1 – Live And Let Die – Paul McCartney and Wings

 

Bricusse also had a hand in writing “The Candy Man,” “Feeling Good,” and had a hand in writing the soundtracks for “Hook,” “Dr. Doolittle,” “Superman” and “Scrooge.”

Sunday, October 24, 2021

1971 SUPER CHARTS - Week Ending October 30th

No great surprise here ...

Cher's big comeback hit, "Gypsys, Tramps And Thieves," moves into the #1 spot this week, dropping Rod Stewart and The Osmonds each down a notch.  (What IS a surprise, I guess, is that Cher is back on the charts at all.  It has been four years since her last Top Ten Hit, "You Better Sit Down Kids" ... and, just like in their golden days of the '60's, she also has a brand new hit on the chart with her husband Sonny, as "All I Ever Need Is You," which climbs from #79 to #54, a leap of 25 places!  This is also THEIR first hit since 1967's Top Ten Smash "The Beat Goes On.") 

The couple have reinvented themselves since their early chart days. 

Back then, they personified the whole "hippie look," Sonny with his bearskin vests and Cher with her Indian dress.  The couple have "glammed up" for the '70's, now wearing tuxedos and elegant designer gowns.  Soon they'll be playing Vegas and hosting their own TV variety show.  It is this second round of stardom that most fans will remember them for.



Two other recent debuts continue to light up the chart as both Isaac Hayes' "Theme from 'Shaft'" and John Lennon's "Imagine" explode into The Top Ten. ("Shaft is up another 16 places in its third week on the chart, landing at #4 ... while "Imagine" climbs from #30 to #6 in only its second chart week.)  Also new to The Top Ten this week are "I've Found Someone Of My Own" by The Free Movement (#11 to #8) and "Peace Train by Cat Stevens (#16 to #10.)

The biggest Top 40 movers this week are "Have You Seen Her" by The Chi-Lites (up 64 places from #88 to #24!!!), "Baby I'm-A Want You" by Bread (which climbs 25 spots from #63 to #38) and "Absolutely Right" by The Five Man Electrical Band, their follow-up to "Signs," which climbs fifteen notches from #50 to #35.

Playing Favorites:
I like young Michael Jackson's solo hit "Got To Be There," which premiers this week at #72.  (It was always the challenge, while driving around on the weekend with a group of buddies, to try and sing along with this record ... those have got to be some of the highest high notes you're ever going to risk rupturing yourself to try and hit!)



"Brand New Key" by Melanie was a fun record, too, with its 
risqué, not-so-subtle lyrics ... you knew the first time you heard it that THIS was going to be a #1 Record.  It makes its chart debut at #75 this week.



And how about The Who's "Behind Blue Eyes," new at #95?  Kind of a brand new sound for them.



This Week in 1971:   
October 25th – Actor / Comedian Craig Robinson is born  

October 26th – Al Green receives a gold record for his first Top 10 hit single “Tired Of Being Alone.”  (He had just performed the song three days earlier on American Bandstand.)  

October 29th – Duane Allman, founding member of The Allman Brothers Band, was killed when he lost control of his motorcycle trying to swerve to avoid an on-coming tractor trailer in Macon, Georgia.  Allman would have turned 25 three weeks later.  


Duane's guitar can be heard on the Derek and the Dominoes classic, "Layla."  (When a guitarist like Eric Clapton asks ANOTHER guitarist to play on his record, it has to be the ultimate compliment!  George Harrison had done the same for Clapton a few years earlier when Eric "guested" on The Beatles' "While My Guitar Gently Weeps.")

The Allman Brothers Band weren't quite household names yet ... that would come about a year later with the release of their "Eat A Peach" album.  Their live album "At Fillmore East" WAS climbing the charts this week in 1971, however.  It would eventually go platinum ... and peak at #13 on Billboard's Top 200 Albums Chart.  

Duane's brother Gregg would go on to marry Cher a few years after that.  (Dontcha just love it when all this stuff comes around like that!)


Also on this date … actress (and renown shoplifter) Winona Ryder is born